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Tudor Minute September 8: Who Killed Amy Robsart!?

Today in 1560 Amy Dudley, also known as Amy Robsart died in her home, found at the bottom of a flight of steps in her home in Oxfordshire. She was the wife of Robert Dudley, the Earl of Leicester, who was also Elizabeth I’s … well, at the very least her closest companion. Perhaps (likely) more. The death of Amy is a mystery even now. At the time there was an official inquest and it was ruled a “misfortune” - ie an accident. But a cloud of suspicion hung over Robert, and it meant that any talk of him ever marrying Elizabeth had to be shelved for good. There are all sorts of theories ranging from an accident to suicide (on the morning she almost forced her servants out of the house. There’s also the theory of course that it was murder, and it’s also been postulated that it could have been an aneurysm. Sadly, we’ll never know.

Amy Robsart died today, 1560.

That’s your Tudor Minute for today. Remember you can dive deeper into life in 16th century England through the Renaissance English History Podcast at englandcast.com.

Christine Hartweg at the Tudor Summit talking about Amy Robsart